New Delhi: Veteran Congress leader and former Union Minister Sushilkumar Shinde may replace Rahul Gandhi as next president of the grand old party, reports claimed on Sunday. Moreover, Gandhi family has reportedly given a green signal to Shinde’s appointment as the next Congress chief.
The development comes as Gandhi has reiterated that there is no going back on his decision, despite requests by leaders from his party and outside to continue in the post. Following Congress’ dismal performance in recently concluded Lok Sabha elections, Gandhi had offered to resign from party’s president post last month.
Other Congress leaders whose names were doing the rounds as probable choice for the post of Congress president. were Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ashok Gehlot, Mallikarjun Kharge, AK Antony, Janardhan Dwivedi and Mukul Wasnik.
However, Shinde has emerged as the front-runner for the post as he is considered as a loyalist of the Gandhi family. In 1971, he had joined the Congress party and won his first election in 1974 from Karmala Assembly seat. He had served as Union Home Minister from 2012 to 2014.
On the other hand, amid series of resignations by Congress office-bearers, the party said that the entire organisation, in one voice, wants Rahul Gandhi to continue in the post. Speaking to reporters, Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said many party leaders have resigned, but the prevailing sentiment is that Gandhi should continue as the party president. (Kamal Nath Offers Resignation From The Post of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee President)
Khera noted that the Congress Working Committee, the party’s apex body, had also passed a resolution, urging Gandhi to remain at the helm.
Earlier on Saturday, various senior leaders in the Uttar Pradesh Congress put in their papers after taking moral responsibility for party’s dismal performance in the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections.
Among those who have resigned in Uttar Pradesh are Aradhana Misra, deputy leader of the Congress legislative party, senior Vice President Ranjit Singh Judeo, Vice President R.P. Tripathi, General Secretaries Satish Ajmani, Shyam Kishore Shukla and Hanuman Tripathi, spokesmen Dujendra Tripathi, Virendra Madan, Brijendra Singh and Pankaj Tiwari.